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Talks still ongoing with Turkey: Afkham

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During a press conference today, Iran’s FM spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham responded to some questions on Iran’s position in regard to Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
In response to the Mehr News correspondent’s question regarding the anti-Iranian remarks by the Turkish FM spokesman, Marzieh Afkham said, “Iran and Turkey, as two neighboring countries, have good bilateral relations; at the same time, regional issues are always being debated between the two countries at a political level.”

She noted that while the two countries did not share common views on particular issues, this had not hindered negotiations, and constructive dialogues were still ongoing between Iran and Turkey.

“Some media have covered particular topics that hold interest to them, but talks between Iran and Turkey are being held and we believe that to resolve regional issues we must employ appropriate policies to prevent further complication.”

In response to another question on whether Iran would take a position against Saudi Arabia’s claims and whether the visit of Iran’s FM to Saudi Arabia is still on the agenda, she said, “what we always have on the agenda is the principle of negotiation with neighboring countries. At present, the region is in crisis and negotiation and cooperation are needed to bring our views close to one another.”

She asserted that Iran has in fact reacted to Saudi Arabia’s remarks and said, “what is raised at the level of media will be reacted upon at that same level and the reaction should be handled appropriately.”

“The ministers’ political trips are a part of the negotiations,” she continued, “there is a timetable for Mr. Zarif’s trip and once the appropriate conditions are provided we will decide about this visit.”

In regard to the nuclear negotiations which will take place in Vienna today, she noted that the talks will last for two days and Director General for Political and International Affairs of Iran’s Foreign Ministry Hamid Baidinejad and Stephan Clement the senior advisor of EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton are jointly leading the two-day meeting.

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